Need advice on power strip/surge protector


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I have a couple machines (both 110V) that I'd like to run a power strip to so I don't have to replace both cords on them (both are too short to reach the closest outlet).  The bigger of the two is the Supermax 19/38 I just bought, and it has a 1.75 HP motor rated at 15.5 amps.  I'm fairly certain this thing would roast one of those cheap Walmart power strips, so I need some advice from any of you electrical gurus on which one will be adequate.  All of the 110V circuits in my shop are 20 amp and run on 12 gauge wire.

 

Will either of these work or do I need something bigger?  Keep in mind I'll never be running both machines at the same time...

 

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0002D017M/ref=ox_sc_act_title_2?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=ATVPDKIKX0DER

 

http://www.amazon.com/Tripp-Lite-ISOBAR8ULTRA-Isobar-Protector/dp/B0000511U7/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1396639939&sr=8-2&keywords=20+amp+power+strip

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The ISOBAR is rated at 12 amps, the other is not rated. I've ised ISOBAR products for years on my home theater and couters, they are great. Will it work with your drum sander, maybe? You need to know what the unit draws when it is running, not the nameplate info. Banging the surge suppressor with 15amps will impact its life. You would be better off with a 20 amp extension cord, there Re even some with a 3 outlet ends on them. Since an extension cord has no circuitry it should last forever.

BRuce

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Yeah I don't really NEED a surge protector, just thought it would be nice.  Ever since my buddy's house was hit by lightning and roasted a bunch of his electronics and appliances, every time a big storm approaches, like about ten times in the last three days, I run around the shop and unplug everything.  Yes, I'm paranoid.

 

I hear that there's a way to add a big ass surge protector right to your main or sub-panel.  Guess I'll look into that and just get an extension cord for the tools.

 

I don't know what the unit draws under load...I've looked for that info on several sites but can't find it.

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Yeah I don't really NEED a surge protector, just thought it would be nice.  Ever since my buddy's house was hit by lightning and roasted a bunch of his electronics and appliances, every time a big storm approaches, like about ten times in the last three days, I run around the shop and unplug everything.  Yes, I'm paranoid.

 

I hear that there's a way to add a big ass surge protector right to your main or sub-panel.  Guess I'll look into that and just get an extension cord for the tools.

 

I don't know what the unit draws under load...I've looked for that info on several sites but can't find it.

 

Suggest putting the surge protector in your electrical panel - Problem solved.

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Suggest putting the surge protector in your electrical panel - Problem solved.

 

I'm gonna look into that.  Just got back from Home Dumpo and I got the makins for a heavy duty extension cord and duplex outlet deal.  My electrician buddy is coming over Sunday for some beers so I'll make him do some work while he's here. :)

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A surge suppressor will NOT protect from lightening. Even the arc gap protectors that the power company rents you will not protect you from lightning. We are talking 100s of thousand of volts and a million amps. Surge suppressor a are for noisy power, spikes and surges only.

BRuce

I have to disagree. In my line of work, two way radio tech, every one of our 400-500 foot towers have a circuit breaker mounted in the electrical panel.When you walk into a tower site at 2:00AM and smell charred electronic smell you figure I am going to be here for days.Once you figure out that nothing has AC power and check the panel and the surge suppressor is blown to bits, call an electrician to replace it. Once power is supplied everything comes back up and you can go back home and go back to bed you become a believer. This has happened to me several times. When you work on 500 foot lightning rods you do everything you can to prevent the all nighters.

 Also I'm sure the equipment I work on is a lot more sensitive than a table saw or a jointer. 

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That may be but we are talking about a home, not a cell tower. I'm going to assume in those circumstances that the lighting hit the tower and the bulk of the charge was shunted to ground. The emf is what chared the industrial special purpose circuit breaker. A lightning bolt hits the beach and the sand is fused to glass, sometimes as deep as 3 feet. A similar hit on the power pole, the transformer or the service entrance wires will not stop at a circuit breaker ( they are too slow), the arc surpressor that the power company installs will shunt a portion of the current until it vaporizes, individual surge suppressor may vaporize and save some devices but in general they fuse and pass some of the surge along. Direct hits are rare, secondary hits that induce spikes in the power lines are more likely. Circuit breakers and GFCI breakers are ineffective and not designed to interrupt this type of spike. Top of the line surge suppressor can help but if the hit is hard enough they die and so to those things plugged into them.

That being said, power tools that are turned off are the least likely to be affected by a lighting strike although spikes can jump the switches. Electronics or machines with electronic read outs or variable speed drives are more susceptible. Most of these devices have some function that stays live all the time, if it's partially on, it is at risk for any surge that comes along.

I unplug my lathe (electronic variable speed) when I'm not using it, the TS stays plugged in as does the bandsaw and drill press. I have ISOBAR surge suppressors on all my computers and my home theater equipment. I also keep my house insurance premium paid. So far all I've lost is a refrigerator.

BRuce

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I'm not trying to argue but the suppressors we install at our tower sites are the same ones you can purchase at any electrical supply house. Even though I referred to the towers as lightning rods I was using this as an example of a misconception that most people have. Most lightning strikes on the towers are shunted directly to ground but most of the damage done to the equipment comes in either from the commercial power lines or from the telco. A simple suppressor tied across the mains on a breaker panel saves us thousands of dollars every year. We mainly take care of 911 dispatch centers and strongly suggest they install them as well. Really the best protection from lightning is a UPS. These devices take the AC and converts it to DC to store in batteries and in turn the DC from the batteries is turned back into AC to run the equipment. Lightning has a very hard time finding it's way through. It might damage the UPS but stops there. This would be a much better option for your PC's but to get one big enough to run your shop would cost a fortune. I would strongly suggest everyone talk to your electrician about have a whole house surge suppressor installed. OK I'm done.

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I've never seen an in-wall gfci that tripped on power loss, though. That would be nice for preventing accidental restarts when power is restored.

GFCI's aren't for power loss they are for grounding issues. I was just saying that a GFCI power cord on a GFCI protected circuit would be redundant and unnecessary. Why would you want a circuit to trip on power loss? If the machine is turned off a start up power surge would have no effect on a machine. Surge protection is more for electronics TV's, computers, because a surge could potentially fry a circuit board on your electronics now if you had a CNC machine I would worry about power surges. 

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Many manufacturing machines have switches which trip off in a power outage.  Otherwise, you can forget to turn a tool off in a power outage (after all, it's not running and there are no power lights to tell you that it's on).  Then, when power returns you have a machine suddenly starting up on its own.  I think that's what Highlander is talking about.

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Buy a GFCI whip. They use them on IOSHA sites because they fault at power loss. This means if you have a momentary shutdown, you will not have your machine auto start. You will need to reset the fault.

Is anybody with me?  I see Gomer curiously looking at Sgt Carter saying, " Say what Sargent???"

 

It looks like we're talking about 2 separate things - lightning strikes and power surges. If I'm hearing y'all correctly... a good surge protector helps for power surges but the best defense against lightning strikes is to unplug machines or turn breakers off? 

 

With a lightning strike, is the machine totally protected when a breaker is turned off?

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A GFCI, or Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter, is actually meant to prevent YOU from being energized. It compares the flow of current through the two power legs of the circuit. Current out must equal current in, otherwise the electrons have found an alternative path to the lower potential side of the power source, which is typically earth ground. That alternative source might be the metal framework of your tool, or it might be a puddle of water the extension cord is lying in, or it might be your body. GFCI devices are supposed to detect a difference of current out - current in at a very small level, just a few milliamps. Hopefully less that it takes to interfere with the beating of your heart.

None of which has anything to to with the original question; I just felt the need to share.

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